May 20, 2024
Albany, NY

Governor Hochul Announces 30 Transformational Projects in the Capital Region as Part of Downtown Revitalization Initiative and NY Forward Programs

Governor Hochul Announces 30 Transformational Projects in the Capital Region as Part of Downtown Revitalization Initiative and NY Forward Programs

Projects Announced in Cohoes, Cambridge, Coxsackie and Kinderhook

Project Renderings Available Here

Governor Kathy Hochul today announced a total of 30 transformational projects for the Capital Region as part of two economic development programs: the Downtown Revitalization Initiative (DRI) and NY Forward.  Eleven projects were announced for the city of Cohoes, the Round 6 winner of a $10 million DRI award; five projects were announced for Cambridge, a Round 1 winner of a $2.25 million NY Forward award; seven projects were announced for Coxsackie, a Round 1 winner of a $4.5 million NY Forward award; and seven projects were announced for Kinderhook, also a Round 1 winner of a $2.25 million NY Forward award.

“We’re making transformational investments in downtown revitalization efforts across the state – tapping into what makes each community unique and opening doors of opportunity for residents and businesses,” Governor Hochul said. “By building a vibrant and robust environment for local residents, we are unlocking the potential for our communities to thrive while honoring the history and traditions that make them special.”

Downtown Revitalization Initiative (DRI)

The city of Cohoes was named the Capital Region winner of the sixth round of the Downtown Revitalization Initiative in 2023. All 11 projects selected seek to continue the revitalization of the last decade in Cohoes by developing the unique cultural and historical amenities to become the Capital Region’s small city model for arts, culture and sustainable redevelopment: attracting new residents, businesses and visitors.

New investment combined with past investments will create a robust environment for the rehabilitation and adaptive reuse of historic downtown buildings and infill development that incorporates mixed-income residential opportunities.

The DRI investments are part of the Governor's ongoing efforts to revitalize the economy and create more opportunities in the Capital Region. The DRI is led by the Department of State, which provides technical assistance as each participating community develops a Strategic Investment Plan identifying specific projects with a unique vision for the revitalization of the downtown area.

The specific projects to be funded through the DRI support several goals and strategies contained in the community’s Strategic Investment Plan, such as amplifying the city's unique sense of place with a genuine and authentic experience that will be catalytic for future organic growth and will foster development that is inclusive while embracing its strong heritage and ethnic diversity. 

Cohoes joins the communities of Glens Falls, Hudson, Albany, Schenectady, Tannersville, Troy and Lake George, which were the Capital Region’s winners in the first seven DRI rounds.

The $9.7 million state investment in these projects through the DRI will leverage additional public and private investments as the revitalization process proceeds and builds momentum.

The 11 city of Cohoes DRI projects, totaling $9.7 million, include:

Transform Historic Cohoes Music Hall into a Carbon Neutral Building: $950,000
Transform the Cohoes Music Hall into a carbon neutral building by upgrading HVAC and implementing geothermal and energy-efficient measures to enable a shift to clean energy, consequently enhancing audience comfort, performer experience and overall functionality.

Rehabilitate the Historic Bank Building to Create a New Library: $2,486,000
Revitalize the historic bank building into a new community library through adaptive reuse to include an ADA entrance, roofing upgrades, HVAC improvements and a revamped public plaza allowing for reading nooks and enhanced landscaping.

Build a Mixed-Use 18-Unit Residential Structure: $2,250,000
Build a new mixed-use building at 60 Remsen, adding residential density and commercial activity to the Downtown core.

Expand the Cohoes Hotel by Building 24-Residential Units: $1,500,000
Build a three-story extension to the Cohoes Hotel, connecting the new building to the rear of the renovation and adding density to the downtown core. The building includes a mix of one- and two-bedroom units, with a range of residential amenities.

Renovate Restaurant/Bar Space and Adjacent Outdoor Lot: $247,000
Renovate the commercial ground floor of a three-story mixed-use building into a bar and restaurant with outdoor patio, restore the historic façade at 38 and 40 Oneida St – 59 and 61 Canvass St and rehabilitate adjacent parking lot with new surfacing, paths, seating, lighting and planting.

Renovate the Historic Carter Building into Apartments and Commercial Spaces: $750,000
Renovate the historic Carter Building at 57 Remsen Street into multiple commercial spaces and residential units with private amenities. Renovations include asbestos abatement, new HVAC, facade and roof repairs and interior refurbishments.

Renovate Multiple Commercial Spaces and Residential Units: $448,000
Renovate a three-story, vacant mixed-use building on Remsen Street, to allow for 7-8 new residential units and 2-5 commercial storefronts. Renovating the interiors and rehabilitating the MEP with some cosmetic touch-ups will lead to housing and commercial opportunity within the business center.

Renovate Three Units within a Key Historic Mixed-Use Building: $244,000
Renovate two upper floors above the Smith’s within the three-story mixed-use building at 171 Remsen Street. Rehabilitating the three currently gutted units aims to increase housing stock along Cohoes’s commercial corridor.

Expand on Public Arts Through the Creation of Murals and Sculptures in the Downtown Core: $100,000
Procuring and creating a series of murals and fabricating and installing a unique collection of mastodon sculptures throughout the Downtown – both beautifying the built environment and attracting foot traffic.

Create City-Wide Wayfinding and Branding: $125,000
Create a wayfinding and branding strategy for downtown Cohoes that is graphically and materially consistent by designing and installing modifiable signage and immersive music elements at key locations.

Establish a Cohoes Small Projects Fund: $600,000
Implement a small project fund to offer reimbursement-based awards for small business support, aesthetic enhancements and façade improvements. The City’s Office of Community and Economic Development will manage and oversee the fund, establishing an evaluation criterion that also requires a 50% private sponsor match.

NY Forward

Building on the momentum of the State's successful Downtown Revitalization Initiative (DRI), the $100 million NY Forward program adopts the same "Plan-then-Act" strategy as the DRI to support a more equitable downtown recovery for New York's smaller and rural communities. NY Forward investments are part of the Governor's ongoing efforts to revitalize the economy and create more opportunities in the Capital Region.

The Seven Coxsackie NY Forward Projects, totaling $4.5 Million, include:

Transform 14 S. River St. into Visitors Center and Museum: $1,186,000
Rehabilitate 14 S. River St. into a Visitors' Center and Museum, including multi-purpose community space as well as the addition of public bathrooms for visitors to downtown and Riverside Park.

Restore Dolan Block for Mixed-Use Redevelopment: $1,000,000
Rehabilitate the historic Dolan Block building to accommodate first-floor commercial space and approximately 10 residential units on the upper floors.

Revitalize 5-7 Mansion St. for Mixed-Use: $700,000
Rehabilitate the historic structure at 5-7 Mansion St. to accommodate ground floor commercial retail and/or food service and to provide multiple residential rental units on the upper floors.

Develop Affordable Artists' Housing at the Public Works Site: $500,000
Construct a mixed-use, mixed-income affordable housing development at the Village Public Works site, focused on artists. The project will include an improved streetscape and any necessary brownfield remediation.

Create an Art, Food, and Music Venue at 1 Reed St: $74,000
Install a commercial kitchen and make interior and exterior improvements to the building at 1 Reed St. to accommodate a venue for community art shows, live music performances and specialty exhibits.

Install Equipment to Improve Cell Service in Downtown Coxsackie: $240,000
Install equipment on top of 46 Reed St. to provide cell coverage to residents and visitors of downtown Coxsackie.

Improve Pedestrian Infrastructure Downtown: $800,000
Design and construct street and sidewalk infrastructure to improve pedestrian connectivity and safety downtown, including an enhanced gateway entrance and incorporating green infrastructure improvements to address stormwater mitigation.

The Five Cambridge NY Forward Projects, totaling $2.25 Million, include:

Expand the Cambridge Public Library: $736,000
Create a new entrance with an accessible lobby, community meeting room, book drop, local history displays, book sale area and room for the Farm2Library program, as well as Gazebo restoration.

Rehabilitate the Red Barn and Establish the Owl Kill Trail Head and Community Park: $347,000
Revitalize the “Lumberyard” through the rehabilitation of the Red Barn for commercial use, installation of walkways and a parking lot with EV charging and replacement of two derelict buildings with a public park and Owl Kill trailhead.

Expand the Cambridge Food Co-Op Community Kitchen: $375,000
Construct an addition to the Cambridge Food Co-Op building to expand the kitchen and provide additional storage, retail, and dining capacity, as well as facilitate cooking classes and community use.

Naturalize the Owl Kill Stream and Improve Surrounding Park Amenities: $350,000
Naturalize the stream banks of the Owl Kill to improve safety and access, particularly along the segment within Varak Park, with planning work extending through the Lumberyard area as well.

Rebuild 18 West Main St. to Restore Rental Housing: $442,000
Rebuild the fire-damaged structure at 18 West Main St. to accommodate approximately 4 residential rental units.

The Seven Kinderhook NY Forward Projects, totaling $2.25 Million, include:

Restore the Historic Bandstand and Install Public Restrooms: $220,000
Restore the historic Bandstand with ADA accessibility and construct ADA-compliant public restrooms.

Reconfigure and Improve Rothermal Park: $825,000
Upgrade Rothermal Park to include new playground equipment, sporting courts and other site amenities.

Revitalize the Old Pharmacy: $272,000
Stabilize and rehabilitate the Old Pharmacy building, located on a prominent corner at Chatham St. and Albany Ave., to accommodate commercial use on the ground floor and residential rental apartments above.

Improve Pedestrian and Bicyclist Infrastructure at Albany Ave.: $467,000
Implement "complete streets" improvements along Albany Ave. to increase comfort and safety for pedestrians and bicyclists traveling between the Albany-Hudson Electric Trail and the core business district.

Install a Community Footpath at the Vanderpoel House: $100,000
Create a recreational community footpath across the House of History property, connecting the Albany-Hudson Electric Trail to Broad St.

Install Lighting at the Village Square: $62,000
Install new lighting along Broad St. and restore existing lighting at the Village Square.

Small Projects Fund: $304,000
Create a small projects fund to undertake a range of smaller renovation and façade improvements to commercial and mixed-use downtown buildings.

Acting New York Secretary of State Brendan C. Hughes said, “Cohoes, Cambridge, Coxsackie and Kinderhook all put together ambitious plans to transform their communities, and those plans are now being put into action through the Downtown Revitalization Initiative and NY Forward programs. We are excited to see their visions take shape through these projects that will add much needed public amenities, housing and culture to each community for residents to enjoy for years to come.”

Empire State Development President, CEO and Commissioner Hope Knight said, “These awards will take the seeds of strategic plans and grow them into projects that will feed these Capital Region communities, their residents and visitors. From reimagining historic buildings to creating sustainable and vibrant residential, commercial, cultural and outdoor spaces, New York State is investing in community-led ideas that will bear impactful fruit.”

Homes and Community Renewal Commissioner RuthAnne Visnauskas said, “The $16 million in DRI and NY Forward investments announced today will have a transformative impact on Cohoes, Coxsackie, and Cambridge, creating over 60 new apartments and increasing the vibrancy each community with new public amenities. By targeting resources towards projects identified as priorities by local leaders, these awards can help directly address the needs of municipalities, benefiting residents and visitors alike. We thank Governor Hochul for her continued focus on revitalizing communities in every region of New York.”

CREDC Co-Chairs Ruth Mahoney, Executive Vice President, President of Wealth Management and Regional President at NBT Bank, and Dr. Havidán Rodríguez, University at Albany President, said, “As the Capital Region grows in popularity, drawing cutting-edge industries and more newcomers to the area, we are pleased to support plans to create even more vibrant places for people to call home. This DRI and NY Forward funding for Cohoes, Cambridge, Coxsackie and Kinderhook will allow community-driven ideas for multiple projects – from arts and parks to dining and housing – become an exciting reality.”

Village of Cambridge Mayor Carman Bogle said, “Thank you to Governor Hochul and all our representatives. On behalf of the Village of Cambridge, I'm thrilled to have our final project selections announced today. We are looking forward to beginning the work to make these projects a reality. Thank you to everyone who worked with us over the last year for this wonderful opportunity to invest in our community.”

Village of Kinderhook Mayor Dorene Weir said, “The Village of Kinderhook has been looking forward to this day for quite some time. We are absolutely delighted and excited to get these projects going. Thank you to the Governor’s office for this opportunity.”

City of Cohoes Mayor William Keeler said, “Over the past year our community worked together to identify and select projects to recommend to the governor for funding through the highly competitive $10 Million Downtown Revitalization Initiative. Today’s announcement marks the next major step in transforming our downtown and are excited to get shovels in the ground as soon as possible.”

Town of Coxsackie Mayor Mark Evans said, “The Village of Coxsackie is very thankful for the advancement of these transformational projects. We look forward to getting started as soon as possible to drive economic development throughout our community.”

DRI and NY Forward communities developed Strategic Implementation Plans (SIPs), which create a vision for future of their downtown and identify and recommend a slate of complementary, transformative and implementable projects that support that vision. The SIPs are guided by a Local Planning Committee (LPC) comprised of local and regional leaders, stakeholders, and community representatives, with the assistance of an assigned consultant and DOS staff, all of whom conduct extensive community outreach and engagement when determining projects.

About the Downtown Revitalization Initiativeand NY Forward

The Downtown Revitalization Initiative (DRI) and NY Forward are cornerstones of the state’s economic development policy. The Downtown Revitalization Initiative was created in 2016 to accelerate and expand the revitalization of downtowns and neighborhoods in all ten regions of the state to serve as centers of activity and catalysts for investment. NY Forward was created in 2022 to revitalize smaller and rural communities throughout the state so that all communities can benefit from the state’s revitalization efforts, regardless of size, character, needs and challenges. Led by the Department of State – with assistance from Empire State Development, Homes and Community Renewal and the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority the DRI and NY Forward represent an unprecedented and innovative “plan-then-act” strategy that couples strategic planning with immediate implementation. Both programs are creating a critical mass of vibrant downtowns in every region of the state that is enhancing economic development, promoting quality of life, fostering socio-economic development and achieving the state’s bold climate goals.

In the first seven rounds of the DRI, the state has committed $800 million, investing in 81 downtowns ripe for revitalization that have the potential to become magnets for redevelopment, business, job creation, greater economic and housing diversity and opportunity. In the first two rounds of NY Forward, the state has committed $200 million, investing in 43 smaller and rural downtowns.

With the Governor’s commitment this year of an additional $100 million each for the Downtown Revitalization Initiative and NY Forward, the state has now invested a combined total of $1.2 billion in both programs since their inception, serving 124 communities combined.

Contact the Governor's Press Office

Contact us by phone:

Albany: (518) 474-8418
New York City: (212) 681-4640


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